How to prevent Glaucoma
While there are no known ways of preventing glaucoma, blindness or significant vision loss from glaucoma can be prevented if the disease is recognized in the early stages. In its most prevalent form—primary open angle glaucoma—vision loss is silent, slow, and progressive. It typically affects side vision first (peripheral vision) and as it progresses, central vision is lost.
SCHEDULE REGULAR EYE EXAMS:
The only way to diagnose glaucoma is by getting routine eye check-up. During your eye exam, the eye doctor or the glaucoma specialist will check your eye pressure, conduct a glaucoma screening test like field of vision, inspect the drainage angle of your eye by gonioscopy, check your optic nerve for damage, and test peripheral vision if required. Early detection and careful, lifelong treatment can preserve vision in most people.
In general, a check for glaucoma should be done:
• before age 40, every two to four years
• from age 40 to age 54, every one to three years
• from age 55 to 64, every one to two years
• after age 65, every six to 12 months
Anyone with high risk factors should be tested every year after age 35. Those at higher risk include people of African descent, people with diabetes, and people with a family history of glaucoma. You are at increased risk if you have a parent or brother or sister with glaucoma.
REDUCE EYE PROBLEMS:
In some cases, if a patient has increased eye pressure, a doctor may prescribe special eye drops designed to reduce the pressure in the eye and delay the onset of glaucoma.
BENEFITS OF EYE EXERCISES:
A regular program of moderate exercise will benefit your overall health, and studies have shown that moderate exercise such as walking or jogging three or more times every week can have an IOP lowering effect.
The benefits from exercise last only as long as you continue exercising; this is why moderate exercise on a routine basis is recommended. Yoga can be beneficial, but it’s best to avoid inverted positions such as head stands and shoulder stands, as these may increase IOP.
PROTECT YOUR EYES:
Wearing protective eyewear is important when engaged in sports activities or home improvement projects.
Eye injuries can result in traumatic glaucoma or secondary glaucoma, so protecting your eyes from injury is another way to prevent glaucoma.
DONT PUT OFF TREATMENT:
Lowering eye pressure slows how quickly your glaucoma advances. If you get treated right away, it can help stop your eyesight from worsening, or make it happen much later.
Currently, regular eye exams are the best form of prevention against significant glaucoma damage.